Sex offenses no barrier to state massage therapist licenses - WFLA News Channel 8

Sex offenses no barrier to state massage therapist licenses

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Licensed massage therapist Michael McIntosh Licensed massage therapist Michael McIntosh
Nurse Practitioner Lisa Spiegel had every reason to believe she was in safe hands when she paid massage therapist Michael McIntosh --a fellow health professional -- to relieve her chronic back pain.

McIntosh had a state license that requires holders to undergo 500 hours of training, pass a proficiency test and a criminal background check by the Florida Department of Health.
But Spiegel says her trust ended abruptly when he sexually battered her during a massage session at his home.
She pressed charges, he plead guilty and ended up on probation as a registered sex offender.

Spiegel was ready to move on with her life until she found out from state probation officer that McIntosh was working again as a licensed massage therapist in good standing just a month or so after he began serving probation.

That's when Spiegel contacted 8 On Your Side, and triggered a news investigation that would eventually uncover a number of other registered sex offenders across the state who still hold active massage therapy licenses in Florida.

Some of them landed in trouble for crimes involving children, but none of their records has prompted any move by the state board of massage to suspend or revoke their licenses.
Spiegel thinks there's something wrong with that. So does a state lawmaker.

Watch Mark Douglas' story Wednesday at 11pm.  Tell us what you think on our WFLA News Channel 8 Facebook page.
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